“There is no place on this planet, no ground, no air, no sanctuary, no wharf, no hermitage, no refuge, no time, like the one week each summer when Black poets descend on an unsuspecting space and it becomes Cave Canem.”
Nikky Finney,The Ringing Ear: Black Poets Lean South
Cave Canem’s week-long retreat is held annually at the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg, Pennsylvania. Black poets of African descent, ages 21 and over, are eligible to apply. Once accepted, poets become “fellows.” Most are invited to attend two additional retreats within a five-year period.
A retreat residency offers an unparalleled opportunity to study with a world-class faculty and join a community of peers. Some fellows hail from the spoken word tradition, others focus on the text. Some are formalists, others work at the cutting edge of experimentation. All are united by a common purpose to improve their craft and find productive space “where black poets, individually and collectively, can inspire and be inspired by others, relieved of any obligation to explain or defend their blackness (Harryette Mullen).”
Applications to the 2018 retreat are now closed. Applications to the 2019 retreat will be available beginning October, 2019.
DEADLINE TO APPLY: December 22, 2017 at 11:59 pm EST
APPLICATION FEE: $20
Dates: Arrive June 10, depart June 16.
Modifications to the retreat’s previous schedule and fee structure have been made to bring expenses into line with finite financial and human resources, and to ensure the program’s sustainability. Additional benefits are a less demanding agenda for staff, fellows and faculty, and allowing staff more time to respond to fellows’ needs and ideas.
Fees are assessed on a sliding scale. Tuition is $1,050 and Room-and-Board is $590. Fellows pay $90 to $1,640 based on their household income, number of dependents, and other factors.
If accepted, please refer to this table and use the financial information form to calculate your fee. Please note that yellow-highlighted fields on the financial information form automatically compute dollar amounts based on the data you enter.
Faculty: Chris Abani, Cornelius Eady, Evie Shockley, Amber Flora Thomas.
Visiting Poet: Robin Coste Lewis
Number of fellows participating: 36—nine per workshop group
- Opening Circle
- All-participant Orientation
- Four 3-Hour Faculty-led Workshops
- Two Fellows Readings
- Two Faculty Readings/Book Signings
- Visiting Poet’s Craft Talk/Book Signing
- Fellow-led workshops (optional)
- All-participant Stewardship Conversation
- Closing Ceremony
- Adult black poets of African descent.
- Applicants 21 years of age or older.
ELECTRONIC NOTIFICATION OF ADMISSION RESULTS BY April 3, 2018.
Accepted applicants: A non-refundable deposit of $90 will be due by April 16, 2018, in order to secure your place. The remainder of your fee will be due by May 14, 2018, no exceptions.
Returning Fellows: Do not use the above application link to register. Eligible fellows will be contacted directly to register between November 2017 – January 2018.
REGISTRATION for Returning Fellows Deadline: January 8, 2018
Register online to secure your place. You may pay one of three deposit options, or your fee in full. Choose from one of the following:
- Submittable Registration: $90 deposit via Submittable
- Submittable Registration: $150 deposit via Submittable
- Submittable Registration: $180 deposit and over via PayPal
Please refer to this table and use the financial information form to calculate your fee. Please note that yellow-highlighted fields on the financial information form automatically compute dollar amounts based on the data you enter.
Email as attachments your completed confidential Financial Information form and scanned documents, if applicable, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Write “2018 Retreat Documents” in the subject line.
QUESTIONS? Call Programs & Communications Coordinator Elizabeth Bryant, 718.858.0000, Monday-Thursday, 10 – 6 pm